For whatever reason you have to apply for a residence permit in Istanbul, you have to go through the following procedure:

1. Apply for an appointment at this website:

2. You most likely will have an appointment at the VATAN police station and the address is:

Vatan Caddesi, Adnan Menderes Bulvarı, Hırka-i Serif Mahallesi, No: 58, Fatih, Istanbul

This is how the VATAN Police Station looks like:

Residence Permit Istanbul Residence Permit Istanbul Residence Permit Istanbul

They will have appointments going until 9p.m. at night, even though the police station is said to close at 5p.m. Ignore the time and go as early as possible in the morning of whatever DAY you have the appointment. If you will go there after 5pm, NOBODY WILL BE THERE. Why do they still make appointment after5pm? This is Turkey, you don’t ask why.

3. After waiting several months for your appointment, go to VATAN and submit all of these documents:

– Passport

– Four Passport-sized photos

– Three photocopies from your passport (the page including your photo, the page where validity and expiry dates are written, and the page of your last entry )

– 50 Turkish Lira

– Student Certificate (in Turkish)

– Print-out of your online application form (must be coloured print)

– Health Insurance (translation must be in Turkish that you have one – they won’t accept an English version)

It would be really helpful if you can take someone who speaks Turkish.

4. Afterwards, go back to Eminönü Mal Müdürlüğü (Local Tax Office) with the photocopy of your passport to pay 50 TL, the application fee.


The address of Eminönü Mal Müdürlüğü (Local Tax Office):

Hocapaşa Vergi Dairesi, 3. Kat, Sirkeci-Eminönü; Behind Istanbul Ticaret Odası

(You can also pay the fee in any Ziraat bank, before you have your residence permit appointment BUT it will be 70 TL instead of 50 TL)

5. If you have a visa for Turkey already, that’s great news. If you don’t have one, you have to pay a fine of 320 TL at Vergi Dairesi and get a receipt for that as well. (They also change visa regulations every week, so one day you might be able to apply for one in your home country, and then it’s impossible the following! It happened to me!)

The address for VERGI DAIRESI:

Merkez Mh., 34245 Gaziosmanpaşa/İstanbul

6. After making your payment, bring the given document (receipts) back to the Police Quarter (VATAN). Make sure you have a copy of your receipts because they collect your original and blame you for not paying afterwards if you can’t prove it.

This guy sits usually right in front of the ‘Emniyet’ station and does copies for 50 kurush.

Residence Permit Istanbul


Residence Permit IstanbulHow to get to VATAN Police Quarter:

Go to Kabataş and take the tramway there. You need to get out of the tramway at Yusufpaşa Station to change trains and get onto the Metro. Leave the Metro at the next station ‘Emniyet’ and Vatan is there.



How to get to Eminönü Mal Müdürlüğü (Local Tax Office):

Eminönü Mal Müdürlüğü (Local Tax Office) is right behind Istanbul Ticaret Odası. You can take any bus that goes to Eminönü or simply take the tram.

If you come between 12 and 1p.m., there won’t be anybody serving you, everybody is having lunch – but it would be wise to queue up. When I was there, there were approximately 50 people waiting and in this one room, there was just one person working the desk.

Good luck !!! If you can do it in one day, you are a hero!!!!

For more information, or before you actually make your way to the police station, check this website for updates

Now, I am really interested in hearing your story!!  I am sure it will be unique. Please share your story in the comment box below!




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